Maggie Nalbandian & Gregory Nalbandian

Written: April, 1993 

     Have you ever looked at a circle and wondered where it began and ended.  Circles seem to have no apparent beginning or ending, but are continuous.  This is a lofty thing for mortals to ponder, for we live in a continuum with exact starts and stops.

       Humans live in physical/material space that is based in time, filled with cycles of beginnings and endings, measured in hours, days, months, or years.  As individuals, we base our lives from a defined beginning - our birthday, until a never looked at end: death.

     As a society, we begin the cycle each January 1.  Past cultures began and ended their cycles based on the seasons.  From these beginning points we structure our lives, setting up limits to our existence based on the time within the cycle, like sub-cycles.  A five year-old can't go to public school but a six year-old must.  A 17 year-old cannot vote but an 18 year-old is allowed to and a 65 year-old person is told they should no longer be a part of the working or productive population.  By setting up these limits based on time, we give structure to our existence and ourselves.  This structure now becomes an identity both personally and socially.  Based on where we are in the cycle, we give ourselves a name.  One day we are a student and abruptly the next day (graduation) we are a doctor, lawyer or teacher - a new name or new beginning.  Let's look at the astrological symbol for limits that define: the planet Saturn.

     Saturn is the symbol of structure, form, and therefore limitation and responsibility.  It symbolically defines us personally and socially.  In medical astrology, Saturn rules the bones and also the skin; both of which give us our very individual physical structure.  Saturn is pictured as Father Time, and therefore governs the perimeters of our existence - birth, the beginning of our cycle, and death, the end of our physical cycle.  The very existence of structure implies limits such as birth/death, and beginnings/endings.  Limits then become inhibitors and once defined (limited), a crystallization can happen based upon fears and inhibitions.  Defenses are formed to protect the structure, and therefore Saturn symbolizes our defense system.

     The definition or structure of our identity is begun at birth and is molded by our parents, our culture, and all authority figures in our lives.  A male child is born and is molded into a masculine stereotype by being limited from or taught to deny all things feminine.  The opposite is true for the female child.  Culturally, we are formed (limited) by being taught we are Americans, therefore denying all other nationalities or human kinship.  Defenses are put into place based on fears or lack of understanding of anything that we are not defined by.  The extreme of the crystallization of limits is hatred which, in reality, is fear.

     Wherever Saturn is in a chart denotes the individual's greatest fears, his/her inhibitions and the nature of the defense system.  It is the perimeters within which the Sun and all other planets function.  Shakespeare said all life is but a stage and we are the players.  Saturn is the stage in the chart defining the props and the size of the stage.  Positively used, we can allow each cycle of our lives, our experience, to become a spiral and ever expand our existence or enlarge the stage.  Saturn can be continually defining and redefining us based on experience and choices we make in life instead of crystallizing and remaining a flat circle with only sameness in existence because of fear and inhibitions.

     Saturn transits, or travels, through the Zodiac in approximately 28-1/2 years.  This cycle is further defined in seven year increments.  If you have read the book "Passages" by G. Sheehy, you will see graphically the Saturn transits in a life.  The book is not an astrology book but is a book on observable crisis periods in everyone's life.  Each of these crisis points coincide perfectly with the Saturn cycle.  Any of you who have reached the age of 30 will recognize the major changes you just went through with Saturn conjunct your natal Saturn.  The Saturn return can be most stressful when resistance is encountered in letting go of past behavioral patterns.  These patterns will no longer work for you in the new cycle of Saturn which will last another 28 years.

     This is called "growing up time" even though you thought you were grown up at age 21.  It is time to take responsibility for your life and realize you can no longer blame others or circumstances for things that don't go right.  This can be a bitter pill to swallow for we like to place blame on anyone but ourselves.  Those of you who have reached the age of 35 are now going through your first Saturn square which, again, can be a bit more stressful, especially if you did not complete the Saturn return satisfactorily.  Still blaming others or circumstances?  If so, this can be harder than the Saturn return.  Positively, this can be a time to make adjustments to the new path in life you chose at the Saturn return.  Remember, every seven years Saturn makes a crucial stress point (negatively) or it helps us redefine our actions and make adjustments (positively).

     Saturn is now transiting the Sign of Aquarius until late January, 1994.  Those of you who have planets in the late degrees of fixed signs (Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, Aquarius) are having one of those nice Saturn transits.  Feeling a bit limited?  Are there all sorts of delays or doors slamming in your face?  Any new responsibilities you have had to take on?  Don't let it get you down as all you need to do is stop and reflect on what you need to redefine.  A Saturn transit can be very positive if you take the time to go through this process of redefinition.

     There is one other added ingredient for those who are having a Saturn transit at this time: Pluto is squaring this point now and the element of major transformation now is added to the natal planet affected.  This is a major turning point in your life and your best bet is to not fight it.  As the saying goes, "go with the flow.

     Saturn is the process of limitation, but it is through this process that we as manifested souls can seek our special destiny by the utter fact of definition through form.  It is a paradox that unlimited souls have to go through a process of limits to grow back to the unlimited, but it is through this evolutionary cycle that distinction of our personal purpose becomes readily addressable.